Arsenal are on high alert after long-term target, Julian Draxler was reportedly made available for transfer by Schalke 04.
The 21-year-old has been admired by the Gunners since coming through the youth ranks of the German international squad, and now it seems Arsene Wenger is ready to pounce following the news.
Schalke 04 are now ready to give into some of Europe’s top clubs, as they look to offload Draxler in order to fund a move for Xherdan Shaqiri.
But to gain the services of the Swiss international, they must first raise the funds, and have reportedly slapped a £30million (€42million) price tag on their prized youngster, Draxler.
The news comes following the latest from Germany’s news outlet, Bild, who believe Draxler and the club have reached mutual agreement to make an exit this summer window.
Draxler would provide a fresh feeling inside an ever-growing number of Arsenal midfielders, and not forgetting he will be another face in the German contingent at the club.
Wenger will be aware that at £30million he would probably be paying over the odds, but after getting rid of Lukas Podolski and the imminent departures of Joel Campbell and Yaya Sanogo, the club have freed up space on the wage bill.
Schalke 04 have had to make big decisions regarding their transfer business after missing out on Champions League qualification and only just scraping into the Europa League next season.
André Breitenreiter’s side managed to fend off a late surge from Borussia Dortmund, and have since failed to attract any top talent to the club during the window.
It’s exactly those reasons as to why Draxler wants to make a switch to the Premier League, and he only has his eyes set on a top four club.
Manchester United’s recent overhaul of midfielders leaves them sorted for the 2015/16 campaign, and Chelsea are reluctant to buy-in after preparing to loan Juan Cuadrado and Mohammed Salah.
The financial fair play rule could play a big part in this deal, and Manchester City’s recent £49million acquisition of Raheem Sterling will leave them with little money to play around with before the ruling comes into effect.
That leaves Arsenal in pole position to sign Draxler, who has 15 senior caps for Germany, and would immediately link up with his former national captain, Per Mertesacker, and fellow teammates Mesut Ozil and Serge Gnabry.
Standing at 6ft, the midfielder suffered a frustrating season last year, racking up just 18 appearances in all competitions, with most of those coming from off the bench.
Draxler found it hard to find his way back into the side after missing six months of action throughout the season, and since then has become a slight outcast among the fan base.
He still managed to pick up two goals and as many assists in the Bundesliga, but his main goal is to now find a tougher challenge in England’s top division.
There is talk that Draxler could develop into a striker in the future and perhaps Wenger could help him do that. The German is well-built, 6ft and a very powerful young player. He drew comparisons to Cristiano Ronaldo when he first emerged. Capable of playing across the midfield or perhaps even up front, a move for Draxler might actually be plausible.